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s●position, could never be for▓gotten, though time, the softener of all ills, ▓had restored her to some degree of her wont▓ed animation, and though the elastic spirits▓ of the young girl had given way, the wom▓an had become yet more attractive and lova▓ble.The first London season a●fter Reginald’s death she had not accompanied● her uncle’s family to the great metropolis, bu▓t spent the period of their absence qui▓etly in Scotland.The second, she d●id not refuse to join them; but▓ scenes of festivity were so evid●ently distasteful, that her fr●iends did not urge her entering more into so▓ciety than her own inclinations pro●mpted.But in her uncle’s house she wa▓s seen and known only to be admired and loved,● receiving, to her extreme aston●ishment, an unexceptionable offer▓ of marriage before she had been two month●s in London.It was declined ▓gratefully, but so decidedly as to give no hop●e.Some weeks afterwards, Lord▓ St.Clair one morning entered Anni●e’s room.She

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was alone, so intently enga●ged in drawing as not to observ●e the very peculiar expressio▓n of countenance with which he regarded ▓her some minutes without speaking. “I would● give something to read your thou▓ghts, cousin mine,” she said, playfully, at l●ength raising her eyes to his face,▓ which instantly resumed its usual kind and o▓pen expression.“I could hardly believe y▓ou were in the room, you were so silent.” ▓ “I was thinking how very